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From Tooth Loss to Cancer: 7 Things Smoking Does to Your Mouth

November 10, 2016

harmful effects of smoking on the oral cavityMost people understand that smoking is incredibly unhealthy and can cause a huge number of problems. Every year in the UK about 96,000 people die from smoking-related illnesses. About half of regular smokers will eventually be killed by their addiction.

However, many people are still unaware of the specific damage that cigarette smoke does when it enters our mouths. In the UK, a charity event dedicated to oral health raised awareness about seven oral health problems caused by smoking.

  1. yellow teeth

The nicotine and tar in tobacco can turn your teeth yellow in a short amount of time. Heavy smokers often complain that their teeth turn almost brown after years of smoking. But this is only the very beginning of all troubles.

  1. Gum disease and tooth loss

Smoking weakens the connections between teeth and gums and jaw. This means that smokers are more likely to suffer from gum disease. In addition, smoking makes them much more vulnerable to infection. It can also lead to bone loss in the jaw and decay of the bone that holds the teeth together, which can cause teeth to fall out.

  1. Bacteria growth

Smoking leads to the growth of bacteria on the teeth, which can lead to decay and cracking. Plaque caused by smoking can also affect the tissues that hold the roots of the teeth under the gum and weaken the bone that supports the teeth.

  1. Tooth wear

When plaque remains on the teeth through irregular brushing, it hardens and turns into tartar. Smokers are more likely to suffer from tartar, which can lead to various gum diseases.

  1. oral cancer

Every cigarette contains a huge amount of chemicals that can cause cancer. When smoking, they all enter the body through the mouth. Smoking turns saliva into a deadly cocktail that damages the cells in your mouth and can turn them into cancer. Two out of three cases of oral cancer are caused by smoking.

  1. Bad breath

This problem is one of the first that appear when smoking. Smoke particles from a cigarette remain in your mouth, throat, and lungs long after you have smoked.

  1. Spotted mouth

Smoking often causes a white or gray area to develop on the tongue, inside of the cheek, or in the lower part of the mouth. This disease is known as leukoplakia. It appears as a result of constant irritation of soft tissues in the oral cavity by smoke.

The best way to solve any of these problems is to quit this bad habit today. If you smoke, then you need to follow three basic rules of oral health:

  • Brush your teeth once a day and before bed with fluoridated toothpaste.
  • Reduce your intake of sugary foods and drinks.
  • Make regular appointments with your dentist and follow his recommendations.

If you notice any changes in your mouth, make an appointment with your dentist immediately. He can also give you helpful advice on quitting smoking.

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